GOW RANT – NO NUMBER

One of my many bugbears these days is when I check my phone I find out one of the calls was from No Number. Well, it can’t be No Number, because someone rang me from that number. Are you trying to rip me off? Are you trying to get your hands on my dosh? By the way, if you are, then it is not worth the cost of your call. Why don’t you want me to know your number? What have you got to hide?!

This week a No Number left me a message. It turned out to be a Credit Card provider and one that I haven’t used for 5 years. Apparently they have changed their name, but their preamble sounded more like MI5 than a flexible friend. Gimme the last 2 letters of the town you were born in! Gimme the first two letters of your mother’s maiden name and my reaction is “Bog off, unless you are prepared to tell me who you are and exactly what it is you want!” It is a real person speaking, although they sound a bit like a robot, but the only thing they admit that it is an automated call. So who programmed you?!

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The trouble is these days that because of client confidentiality, No Number cannot tell you anything when they ring up until they have the answers to your secret questions. So I immediately think it is a scam.

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Well, you hear these stories don’t you? 5 minutes on the phone to somebody you’ve never heard before and you have lost everything. I have no doubt that 80% of No Number calls are scams, the trouble is because no one is allowed to tell you what they are about these days, you can never be sure.

Who do they think they are anyway? I can’t believe some of these people who call you up out of the blue, even if they are bone fide, are trained for the purpose and they are messing with people’s lives. They don’t know you from Adam and the one I spoke to this week, from one of the leading credit card companies, was bawling down the phone at me because I wouldn’t divulge two letters of Mother’s maiden name. She was so aggressive and because she would tell me what the purpose of her call was, I kept stum.

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I love technology. I embrace it. I would have passed all my exams at school if had had a computer. I am sure of it. But no, back in the dark ages, you had to write everything out by hand! By the time I had written a paragraph, my hand felt like it was about to drop off and my concentration was off with the fairies.   I can now type a huge amount of words in a minute. I can’t tell you how many, because it would sound like I am boasting. I don’t mean to, but I am just pretty damn quick that’s all.

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It is kind of scary to think how much more advanced technology will get. How much more intrusive will these No Number calls get? Telephone screens in all the rooms in your house? Will we be able to hear the telephone screen ring whilst you are in the bath and when you say “Hello” you be able to see these aggressive No Numbers in the flesh or will they display their own personal avatar? Will they ask you to place your hand on the screen of the screen phone to verify your hand print? Will they be able to x-ray the screen to steal your veritable DNA? Let’s hope not.

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